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Running in North Carolina – the Running Paradise of the Tar Heel State

Prepare to hit the ground running and experience the untamed beauty of North Carolina, a haven for runners seeking exhilarating adventures. From breathtaking mountain trails to scenic coastal paths, North Carolina offers a diverse landscape that caters to every runner’s passion. Lace up your shoes and immerse yourself in the vibrant running culture and extraordinary natural wonders that await you in the Tar Heel State.

When To Run in North Carolina

With its mild climate, North Carolina provides optimal running conditions throughout the year. Spring offers vibrant blooms and pleasant temperatures, perfect for exploring the state’s lush forests and picturesque parks. Summer invites you to embrace the coastal breeze and run along sandy beaches or delve into the cool shade of mountain trails.

Fall brings a kaleidoscope of colors as the leaves transform, creating a breathtaking backdrop for your runs. And in winter, the state’s milder climate allows for invigorating runs, whether you choose to conquer snowy trails or explore the urban charm of vibrant cities. Whatever the season, North Carolina beckons runners to embark on unforgettable journeys.

The Must Run Spots in North Carolina

North Carolina is a treasure trove of must-run spots that showcase the state’s natural beauty and cultural heritage. Start your adventure in Asheville, nestled in the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains, and explore the iconic Blue Ridge Parkway, boasting stunning vistas and tranquil trails. Discover the Outer Banks, a chain of barrier islands offering miles of pristine beaches where you can run alongside crashing waves and witness breathtaking sunrises.

Traverse the Uwharrie National Forest and conquer the challenging Uwharrie Trail, a favorite among trail running enthusiasts. For a taste of urban charm, head to Charlotte and run through its vibrant streets and greenways. No visit to North Carolina would be complete without a run in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, a runner’s paradise with its rugged trails and awe-inspiring vistas. Whether you prefer mountain trails, coastal paths, or urban settings, North Carolina has it all.

Run Travel Events in North Carolina – 2023

North Carolina Running Holidays


Threshold Expeditions – Blue Ridge Mountains – April 21 – 23, 2023

Start your weekend run adventure at Brevard, N.C. in the tranquil Pisgah National Forest. You’ll summit Pilot Mountain before heading to Black Balsam Knob, following the trail to the Shining Rock Wilderness area. There’s a bonus adventure if you’d like to summit Cold Mountain. From challenging climbs and wild descents to impressive views, this weekend will leave you refreshed and inspired.

North Carolina Running Camps


Marathon & Half Marathon Week – July 23 – July 28, 2023

For runners looking to focus their training for a fall marathon, this 5-day run camp in North Carolina is a great way to get personalized coaching in a refreshing mountain setting.


Half Marathon & Marathon Weekend – September 14-17, 2023

For a tune-up, refresher, or a bit of running inspiration, stop by Zap Endurance’s run-focused weekend.


Tanawha AdventuresNC High Country Trail Camp – October [2023 Dates TBD]

North Carolina Running Retreats


Blue Ridge Running Vacation – July 9-14, 2023

Though this running weekend by Zap Endurance is designed to improve your running through daily runs, coaching, discussions, and video analysis, its setting in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains is the ideal setting for treating yourself to some self-care (while you still get your miles in, of course). Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy the grounds at the idyllic Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock, NC.


Run Your Heart Out – Blue Ridge Relay & Retreat – September 7 – 11, 2023

There may be no more entertaining way to take part in the Blue Ridge Relay, one of the longest running relay races in the United States. Mix running with a healthy dose of karaoke, yoga, laughter, storytelling, picnics, and more as you race and cheer on the rest of your team.

Embark on an Epic Running Adventure Across the United States

While North Carolina offers an unparalleled running experience, there are countless other running destinations waiting to be explored across the United States. Discover the enchanting trails of Colorado, soak up the coastal views in California, or immerse yourself in the natural wonders of Arizona’s national parks. Unleash your stride through the quiet streets of New Hampshire, venture into the untamed beauty of Alaska, or embark on a scenic run along the Oregon coastline.

Our expert guides on run travels have curated a collection of extraordinary running experiences in various states across the country. Let your running journey take you far and wide, and discover the diverse landscapes and communities that make the United States a runner’s paradise.

More About Running In North Carolina

Here are our recent stories about running experiences in North Carolina.

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